Mask

About this object

History of use

Worn by Hamats!a dancer.

Narrative

Originally had a skull on top of the head (J. Seaweed, 1966).

Iconographic meaning

Represents Hukxhukw of Heaven: Huxhugwaxtawe', one of the servants of Baxbakwalanuxsiwe', cannibal at the north end of the world.

Physical description

Large, carved, wooden, hokhokw mask with a long beak and circular cutout nostrils. The beak is hinged with pieces of leather nailed to either side. The beak is painted black with a red mouth and nose. Along the front end of the beak are ten, white, incised U-forms. At the back of the nose are two large black and red U-forms followed by smaller red and white split U’s outlined in black. The eyes are white, outlined in black and red, on a white, ovoid shaped background; brow is black. The inside of the mask is hollow with the exception of twine used to open and close the beak. The top and side edges of the mask are lined with braided cedar. The top has short pieces of cedar creating a fringe, while the back has longer strips that hang over the wearer. Intertwined in the cedar are a few feathers. The bottom has crooked beak depicted with black and white eyes, red and white mouth and a protruding, crooked beak. The mask is painted black, red, and white with Northwest Coast stylized designs.